With summer right around the corner, the time of summer concert announcements is upon us all. Amongst these announcements is none other than the Vans Warped Tour lineup, something that every scene kid looks forward to. The Vans Warped Tour is an annual summer festival, that spans practically the entire summer, traveling from city to city across America. The tour features an incredible number of bands (the number this year is around 90, although every band does not play every date) that play on seven different stages. Warped Tour gives fans the incredible opportunity of meeting their favorite bands, getting there autographs, and having the opportunity to buy exclusive merchandise. It’s an incredible environment, and it’s not that often to see a bands casually walking by fans in the crowd on their way to the stage or their tent.
Last year, I attended Warped Tour for the first time, and it was an awesome experience. The day started at 8 am and I left the venue at about 7 pm, and even though it might have been one of the hottest days all summer, I still loved every second of it. Warped Tour’s lineup last year was so incredible, I got to see so many different awesome bands in one area, back to back to back. Leaving the venue that night, I told myself that I wanted to make this an annual trip, and was already looking forward to next years Warped Tour.
Fast forward to two days ago, as I sat eagerly awaiting the announcement of this years lineup. As unfortunate as it is to say, I am seriously disappointed with what was announced. If I’m being perfectly honest, I think this years bands suck. Now don’t get me wrong, there are maybe five bands that I would go watch, but that’s five bands out of the ninety that were announced. Maybe it’s because the lineup last year was so strong. With bands like Sleeping With Sirens, Sum 41, Mayday Parade, New Found Glory and Set It Off, it was a stacked roster. 2017’s roster is just so weak in comparison. Now, don’t get me wrong, there are still some good bands this year, artists like Beartooth, Bowling For Soup and American Authors. Yet, the lineup still did not impress me as much as I hoped it would. The main stages this year are filled with names I’ve never heard of before. One of the great things about Warped Tour is that up and coming bands play the tour, and it gives audience members an excellent opportunity to discover some new artists. I find this to be really awesome and really exciting, but at the same time, there still needs to be those more well known names to draw in excitement. Even on the main stages, there are not a lot of well known names listed to play, and that is a little bit of a disappointment to me personally.
I also could not help but notice the amount of female fronted bands that Warped Tour placed on the bill this year. There was recently a big controversy surrounding this years Reading and Leeds festival lineup, and how there are 57 male performers and only one female. I think that following all of the publicity this got, Warped Tour took that under consideration when booking their artists. Women are often overlooked when it comes to the music industry, especially in the area of rock and roll. Warped Tour is really changing this male dominated ideal, and are giving women a very distinct role in this tour, a role that is more prominent than it has ever been before. Although I’m not all that thrilled with Warped Tour’s lineup this year, I am really happy and excited for their addition of female acts, and I’m hoping that this particular tour will begin the gateway of other big name festivals to include more females in their lineups.
I loved Warped Tour and the entire organization and atmosphere of it. Going last year was one of the highlights of my entire summer, and I think that because I had such an amazing time, and the lineup was so incredible, that I had really high expectations for 2017’s lineup. Of course, this is just my opinion. There may people who hated last years lineup and love this years. It’s all about personal preference, but in my opinion, Warped Tour let me down this year. View the lineup for yourself below, and you can make your own opinion.